Actual, true, honest-to-goodness FREE Carfax report for any VIN


Okay, you're trying to buy a vehicle and you want to know the vehicle history, right?  Everyone online says "use Carfax", which is good advice since they have the largest database of vehicle records and their site is clean and easy to use.  Many good, honest dealerships have a Carfax account and publish their car info for free so check that option first.  But, let's say you're looking at a car on Craigslist and it only has a VIN number and no mileage or service history.  If you go to carfax.com and paste the VIN from the Craigslist ad, the site says something like "Yay, we found the vehicle in our database and it contains lots of awesome information and detailed goodies, but... you need to pay us $40 first."

Lame.

So you're wondering to yourself, "Can I get at least some of that info for free (legally)".  Well, you can.  And it's pretty simple.  Instead of going to their main homepage, browse to http://www.mycarfax.com/  You'll see a big "Free! Sign Up" area on the homepage.  Use a temporary email and create a random one-time password to create your account.  Once logged in, it will ask you to set up your "garage".  Instead of putting the VIN numbers of the cars in your actual garage at home, put in the VIN of the vehicle you're interested in buying.  It will ask you a few questions about the vehicle (like year, make, and model which you get from the Craigslist ad) ...and Presto! a basic report of the vehicle with mileage, service records, and maintenance history.  You still don't get accident reports or all the data in the $40 report but it may help some of you out there...

P.S. If you still need a complete report, you might try one of the services recommended by the National Vehicle Services government agency.

21 comments:

Andy Volodin said...

Here's the free VIN number decoder.
It shows extended tech info and factory options. If you are developer, then they have VIN decoder API.

Mr. Blue Coat said...

Hi Mark, thanks for notifying me of the broken link. I've updated it accordingly.

Mark Kellogg said...

Wow. Thanks for updating the link so quick. I was actually looking for that $2 from NMVTIS but it seemed that among its partners, VINaudit offers the cheapest price if you buy a bucket of 5-10 vehicle history reports.

Paul Patterson said...

@MR BLue Coat

It happened to me once and I paid $40 for 10 reports from carfax but I've only used 1 so I have to sell the rest and was really time consuming.

@Mark I've checked VINaudit and actually got a single report for only $2.5 each using their discount coupon. Thanks heaps :D

Unknown said...

Broken link. Any update?

Mr. Blue Coat said...

Link updated

Andres_L said...

Link broken

Mr. Blue Coat said...

Yeah, it was only a matter of time I suppose...

LemonChecks.com said...

Free Carfax report at http://www.lemonchecks.com

LemonChecks.com said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
guest blogger said...

lemonchecks.com which takes you to vincheckup.com doesn't give you free full report. It only tells you so many entries found which doesn't really tell you anything. They all could be title change, recall/service records.
vinaudit.com sells you a report for $4.99 but that's not very useful. It has title change, salvage and theft records but doesn't include any accidents.

Kathleen Lamb said...

Bull!!!! This site does not provide anything more than a short VIN description. It claims everything is free but, after it runs a VIN check from another site it asks you to register and then hits you for your credit card. Totally LAME!!!!

Kathleen Lamb said...

It's a scam. It says FREE, FREE, FREE and it isn't!!

Kathleen Lamb said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Mr. Blue Coat said...

At this point, you're probably best just paying for a service recommended by the government: http://www.vehiclehistory.gov/nmvtis_vehiclehistory.html

Duane Smith said...

@guestblogger

If you're saying Vinaudit is not a very useful, then it only implies that NMVTIS reports aren't useful and no good. Vinaudit is an authorized vehicle history report provider and the information that are being compiled were from NMVTIS and NICB. You can't get or purchase a vehicle history report directly from NMVTIS unless you go through one of its partners. If you'll use the discount coupons, you'll get each report for about $5. In fact, dealers are able to get it for just $1 under a monthly subscription which is almost free. Much better than having carfax reports for 40 bucks for similar results and level of accuracy.

jd binkley said...

I am trying to find the manufacturer of an after market part and was hoping it was contained in a car report. I don't care about the owners or accident records. Is there a way to get this part of the report?

Mr. Blue Coat said...

Hi JD, that info is not found on a vehicle report. I recommend you talk to a mechanic or do an internet search.

Brian said...

Thanks for the super tip about mycarfax. It fit my needs exactly!

LemonChecks.com said...

You can't get a full free carfax report but you can get the basic vehicle history along with accident and theft records if any exist on https://www.LemonChecks.com

Unknown said...

great suggestion, exactly what i needed

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